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Bush signs bill to revamp intelligence gathering

WASHINGTON, DEC. 17. The United States President, George W. Bush, today signed into law the largest overhaul of the U.S. intelligence gathering in 50 years, hoping to improve the spy network that failed to prevent the September 11, 2001 attacks.

"Our vast intelligence enterprise will become more unified, coordinated and effective," Mr. Bush said.

"It will enable us to better do our duty, which is to protect the American people."

The 563-page bill, which endured a thorny path to congressional passage, also aims to tighten borders and aviation security. It creates a federal counterterrorism centre and a new intelligence director, but Bush did not announce a candidate for that post at today's ceremony.

"A key lesson of September 11 is that America's intelligence agencies must work together as a single, unified enterprise," the President said.

Mr. Bush was joined at the signing ceremony by the CIA Director, Porter Goss, the FBI Director, Robert Mueller, members of Congress, leaders of the September 11 commission and relatives of the people killed in the attacks. — AP

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